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Joel Makin in action against James Willstrop at the J.P. Morgan Tournament of Champions

Makin and Willstrop predicted to contest blockbuster AJ Bell British National final

Top seed Joel Makin and defending champion James Willstrop are seeded to meet in the final of the AJ Bell British National Championships in Nottingham from 13-16th February after the men’s draw was released yesterday.

Welsh No.1 Makin and former World No.1 Willstrop met just two weeks ago at the Tournament of Champions in New York, where Makin prevailed in a match lasting over an hour.

Three-time champion Willstrop, 36, will be appearing in his 22nd consecutive championships, while this year marks the third time 25-year-old Makin will compete.

In the top half of the draw, Makin is seeded to face World No.19 Adrian Waller in the semis. Should that transpire, Makin is set for a stern test with Waller prevailing in three of their previous four encounters, most recently at the WSF Men’s World Team Championships in December.

World No.18 Willstrop, seeded two, is predicted to face 3/4 seed Daryl Selby in the semi-finals in what would be a repeat of last year's final in which Willstrop triumphed.

Scottish No.1 Greg Lobban is seeded to meet Selby in the quarters, but faces a tough first round against rising Englishman George Parker. Meanwhile, fellow Scot Alan Clyne, an eight-time Scottish National champion, is scheduled to face Makin in the quarter-finals.

Qualifying will see 34 players compete for the four qualifier spots on 11th and 12th February at Nottingham Squash Rackets Club.

AJ Bell British National Championships 2020: Men’s Round 1
[1] Joel Makin (Wal) v Qualifier
[5/8] Alan Clyne (Sco) v Qualifier
[5/8] Tom Richards (Eng) v Richie Fallows (Eng)
¾ Adrian Waller (Eng) v Nathan Lake (Eng)
¾ Daryl Selby (Eng) v Qualifier
[5/8] Greg Lobban (Sco) v George Parker (Eng)
[5/8] Declan James (Eng) v Patrick Rooney (Eng)
[2] James Willstrop (Eng) v Qualifier

To view the draw, visit the official website at www.nationalsquashchampionships.com. Follow live action from the tournament from February 13-16 on SQUASHTV with a free digital subscription.

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